Home > Contra Dancing > Tacoma Fifth Saturday



April 30, 2016

Hope you'll join us, at Wells Hall. Singles, couples, first-timers, and experienced dancers; All are Welcome. No partner needed; Alcohol and smoke-free; Workshop for newcomers (see below.) We have a great time, dancers, caller, and musicians too! Sponsored by the Seattle Folklore Society.

LINDSEY DONO will teach and call the dances. It is difficult to think of any caller with a broader sense of everything that goes into contra dancing. She dances a lot herself, really well, is a delight to dance with, and makes the dance go well wherever she is on the dance floor. In her several years since taking up calling in this region, she's informed herself re the repertoires and watched the styles of the callers that have called longer than herself. When I've danced to her calling, be it at Seattle, Tacoma, Olympia, or one of the festivals like Folklife or Cascade Promenade, I've been impressed with her clear, friendly, calm teaching and the way this inspires confidence on the floor. I have never met a caller who isn't themself a musician, who has learned more about contra tune repertoire and the "feel" of how music and dance fit together.

As a result of all she's learned and put into her calling career (as well as her inherent personable nature) I have found Lindsey's calling a delight to dance to, and you will too. We are fortunate to have her call for us this month!

FRESH CIDER wraps you in the comfort of a traditional New England sound in its full breadth and glory. From old Yankee hornpipes to late 20th century tunes from the great Bob McQuillen; from Celtic tunes to those from the Shetland Islands and England; leavened by Northwest and Missouri old time tunes. Chosen to fit the flow of each dance, and played with rock-solid rhythm. Port Orchard's Laurel Stone, fiddle; Phil Katz, melodeons; backed by Dave Goodmanson on piano. This month, in honor of The Queen's 90th birthday, we have worked up a special set of English jigs, and may also present a set of reels from the South of England where Phil has traveled extensively.

Our band plays "close to the dance and the dancers", choosing tunes to match the dance chosen by the caller, and styling to support the dancers as each dance evolves. It is a pleasure to play for our friends out on the dance floor.

Olympia's JESSE PARTRIDGE will be doing PA for us. Besides his skills as PA operator, he brings the sensibility imparted by his own experience as a fiddler, caller, and dancer.

Specifics on the Event

The Fifth Saturday Contra Dance will be held at Christ Church Wells Hall, 310 North K Street, Tacoma - directions below. It is well-known as one of the sweetest halls in Puget Sound. (Note: It's the same location as the Tacoma Contra Dance that's held on most Third Saturdays.)

The dance will run from 8:00 - 11:00 pm. The cost is $9.00, with a $2.00 discount for 18 down and 65 up. As always, a 10% discount will be available to Seattle Folklore Society members who request it.

There will be a newcomers' intro-lesson at 7:30 pm. Contra dancing is "not rocket science", and by the third dance, anyone looking out over the crowd will likely be unable to tell who just learned that evening! We are proud of the tradition of asking newcomers and visitors to dance, and looking after them on the dance floor. (Experienced dancers often bring friends they've been wanting to introduce to contra dancing, and help out by dancing in the mini-lesson.)

Directions to Wells Hall   

310 North "K" Street, Tacoma

From Seattle, "Eastside" of Lake Washington, or Des Moines

I-5 south to exit 133 (Tacoma City Center). Then take I-705 and the Schuster Parkway exit on the right (still called I-705). From there again stay right and take the Stadium Way (first) exit from Schuster Pkwy. At the top of the exit ramp, turn right. The street goes up hill. Follow it til it ends, then swing left onto North 1st. You pass Stadium Thriftway and a Chevrolet lot, and then merge into Division at a traffic light. Continue on Division, turn right onto North "K". Wells Hall is the second building on the left. Enter the dance through the church courtyard.

From Olympia

Take Interstate 5 to Tacoma, exit 132 (Route 16-Gig Harbor exit), which is quite a bit south of the center of Tacoma. Head for Route 16 (skipping the S 38th St exit); once in the curving exit ramp, keep your eyes peeled for the immediate first exit (1A); to Sprague Avenue. Once on S Sprague Ave at street level, you're heading north; pass lights at 19th and 12th (or 11th) until you come to multi-way light at 6th. Take the soft right into Division (not the sharp right into 6th). Follow Division to the light at North "K" Street and take a left. Wells Hall is the second building on the left.

From West of the Narrows Bridge

Take WA 16 east across the Narrows, and take exit 1B for Union Ave. Keep left at the fork; follow signs for University of Puget Sound. Turn left onto S Union Ave (at which point you'll be northbound.) Go about 1.5 mile and turn right into 6th Avenue. Follow 6th about a mile to a multi-way intersection; there take a soft left into Division Ave. Follow Division to North "K" Street, where you take a left. Wells Hall is the second building on the left.

For more information please contact:
Phil Katz - - 206 722 8228.
(you know what to do with the ZZZ)

Webmaster: Matt Fisher (
Last modified 04/08/16.